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Is Cadillac's Image Dying and Does Anyone Care?

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  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    If "Ya, I gotta have one of those!" is the standard, it most definately and truly is Cadillac in my opinion, or if I'm being more sensible - a Buick.

    Clearly a throwback remark. Very few non-GM lifers aspire to own a Cadilac outside of the Escalade and no one outside of GM pep rally aspires to own a Buick. A Buick is an utter and complete joke compared to a Mercedes, BMW and certain Lexi.

    M
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Therefore, it seems as if Cadillac is always playing catch up.

    Bingo, Cadillac gave up too much ground and this is what they're stuck doing all the time. The new CTS will prove whether or not they can truly answer the challenge presented by a trio of new cars, the G35, IS350 and 335i. No excuses this time this is the car that is supposed to be more than merely "competitive" with this class, it should have them beat in some areas and be fiercely competitive in others. You can't expect them to build a class leader coming from at best the middle of the class which is where the current CTS resides, well actually its towards the back of the class.

    For some reason, I don't think that Cadillac wants to compete with Lexus or BMW.

    I see what you're saying here, but I disagree. The V-Series models prove they want to been seen as the equal to Mercedes/BMW and the switch to RWD says that also.

    The DTS is an antique. Some GM fans will tell you that this car competes with the Lexus LS, Mercedes S and BMW 7-Series, but they live in a fantasy world. When a competitor has twice as many gears in their tranny its time to call it a day. The DTS is to Cadillac what the ES is to Lexus, a throwback, difference is the ES is more up to day technology wise.

    M
  • aldwaldw Posts: 82
    Caddy has the technology and the know-how to make worldbeaters, and the next few years will show this.

    As Yogi Berra once said, "It ain't over till its over", and in this case, Caddy has more lives than a cat. :)
  • merc1merc1 Posts: 6,081
    Caddy has the technology and the know-how to make worldbeaters, and the next few years will show this.

    Yeah we've heard this (excuse) for years now. It is always wait till next year. Competition moves the game onward and then it is yet again wait till next year.

    Seriously though I don't think GM has the funds to make anything special for Cadillac at this point.

    M
  • nvbankernvbanker Posts: 7,285
    P.S. NV, you know you bought the Navigator, because of the power running boards.

    Not at all, I did just the opposite, I deleted the running boards. Don't care for them. Not functional. But, you're wrong about the Slade having more gagetry than the Navigator. All it has is the big grunt engine, and while we're on that, the 5.4L Triton engine is old and embarrasing? How long has that tired old Northstar been out there unimproved and unrefined? The 5.4L has been brought ont in 2,4 & 3V versions, each more efficient than the last. No, you're right about so much, but not about the Navigator. It's at least as good, in some different ways, albeit, as the Escatahoe. ;)
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    Agree 100%. "The Standard of the World" means to me is a collective group cars, trucks, suvs, under one brand that achieves the highest standards, but offers the consumer a great value. One car I will mention now that meets those standards is the Corvette. Simply the best sports-car money can buy. ;) Cadillac, has had individual cars in the past that have been "Standard of the World". One that comes to mind is the 1993' Northstar Cadillac Seville STS. The Northstar in the Seville STS and Eldorado ETC, raised the bar. I remember classmates saying the Cadillac Eldorado ETC was their dream car. Others said the same thing about the Seville STS. I guess we liked them so much because they were fast, had bose stereo systems with CD players, and were sporty lookin'. Now I'm willing to bet their are kids that want to own a Cadillac Escalade SUV and/or EXT. I'm sure their are still some that would like to own a STS, and CTS, not to mention the "V" models. I'm willing to bet the next CTS-V will be a object of desire for the youth. If the STS interior improves dramatically it also could have kids like myself, when I was young wanting a piece of Cadillac.

    So being "The Standard of the World" isn't about being the fastest, most expensive, etc, it boils down to more than that. I'm not saying Cadillac, is currently the
    "Standard of the World" now but I believe in Rick Wagoner, enough that he will have the Cadillac brand back at the top of the mountain once again within 3 year time frame. He will give me a great product that's great enough to at least confidently argue them as being
    "The Standard of the World" brand once again. ;)

    Rocky
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    NV, whatever you and I agree often but on this subject we are miles apart. :P

    The Slade, as I proved has more "Gadgetology" then the ExpiGator. You can look away from the 800lb Gorilla but NV, he's still standing their right in front of you pal. :D

    Rocky

    P.S. The Northstar has had like 3-4 makeovers in its lifetime. The latest was adding VVT to it in 2005. I do agree GM, needs to add direct injection to it and/or make a brand new Northstar.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    ...I'll have to wait for 2010 when Cadillac, (hopefully) puts the DTS on a RWD/AWD platform. Right now, I'm happy with my current Seville STS. I'm 41 and I like the current DTS' styling, but I'm waiting for an updated powertrain.

    As for 8 gears in the Lexus LS460? That alone would frighten me away from the car. It's a darn passenger car, not a semi tractor! If that transmission goes out of warranty, one better take out a second mortgage and repent their sins. Transmission specialists everywhere will be sending their kids to Ivy League schools.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,064
    > "GM pep rally, very few non-GM lifers, utterand complete joke"

    You sound like a GM hater. Do you have a study with data on this or are you living in the past after problems with vehicles in the 80s or 90s?
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    LOL, I bet that 8-speeder is expensive to fix. ;)

    Rocky
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    Shoot, my 1988 Buick Park Avenue is a great car. I've been driving it almost exclusively this month. If it represents GM at its worst, the current cars must really be awesome. I must say my girlfriend's LaCrosse is a solidly-built car. We've experienced absolutely no problems so far.
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    Think about the 5-speed tranny traumas with the current Camry and they want to try an 8-speed? Go ahead big time!
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    Yeah, they could have some jitters. 8-speeds is alot and has more potential for breakdown. However maybe someday GM, will come out with one if they can keep the costs down. Let toyota deal with the headaches for a while. ;)

    Rocky
  • lemkolemko Posts: 15,144
    Shoot, GM invented the automatic transmission and has always had the best one. Even BMW uses GM Hydramatics.
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    Yep, I agree transmissions have never been a major flaw for GM. Now Chrysler OTOH !!! :surprise:

    Rocky
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,064
    Now that's a fact worth knowing--seriously. BMW uses GM trannies. I knew volvo used a tranny by GM a few years back. Now it's a Ford--who knows. I know Volvo used to use the variable AC compressors by GM several years back; I watched them being made on a plant tour at Harrison.
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    It probably still is a GM tranny. GM and Ford, togeather developed the current 6-speed automatic. ;) I'd love to see GM, and Ford, merge but boy, oh boy that would be a difficult task.

    Rocky
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,064
    That would be double trouble on factory capacity and labor union high pay and high continuing benefits. Maybe GM and Chrysler if DC is successful in spinning it off as the morning news links imply.
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    Chrysler, would be a great car company for GM to get. They could make a Cadillac Imperial and drop the DTS name. :D

    Rocky
  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    When Cadillac won the Dewar Trophy twice within a decade, it was a significant achievement. Interchangable parts and the self-starter were major technical advances that promoted the development of the automobile. Today's equivalent would be a sedan that gets 70 mpg while maintaining current levels of safety, comfort and performance.

    As Cadillac used the slogan "Standard of the World" over the years, it gained a new meaning - it signified that this product was the best in its field. And for several decades (I'd say until the early 1960s), when there were fewer choices in passenger autos, and the divide between low-priced cars and luxury cars was much more significant than it is today, Cadillac really was the "Standard of the World."

    Moving from a Ford or a Chevy to a Cadillac represented a huge jump in comfort, luxury, craftsmanship and reliability.

    But the automobile market fragmented, and Cadillac fell behind the Europeans - particularly Mercedes Benz - in quality and technology.

    Meanwhile, the lower-priced domestics were offering all of the comfort aqnd luxury features available on a Cadillac. By 1971 there really wasn't much difference between a properly equipped Caprice and a DeVille. And Cadillac quality kept getting worse.

    In the 21st century, it's much more difficult for any one car line to claim that it represents the "Standard of the World." There are so many different segments - sporty sedans, economy sedans, family sedans, crossovers, SUVs used as passenger cars, etc. Each segment has its own standard.

    And the gap between a popular-priced family sedan and a luxury car isn't quite as big anymore.

    The Fusion, Accord and Camry are very nice cars that will offer anyone all of the comfort, safety, performance and reliability that most buyers need.

    The Escalades are nice trucks, but that is because the GMT-900 platform is one of the best - if not the best - big truck platform in the business. The Cadillac versions really don't offer any improved workmanship or reliability over the Chevrolet versions of these vehicles. If anything, the Chevrolets are better buys because of their lower prices.

    The CTS is currently outclassed by the BMW 3-Series.

    The STS has not made any dent against the BMW 5-Series and Mercedes E-Class. It's pretty much an also-ran in its segment.

    A Buick Lucerne is a better deal than a DTS for those seeking a larger front-wheel-drive car with a more traditional combination of ride and handling. The Lincoln Town Car is better suited for limousine conversions.

    The XLR certainly hasn't dethroned the Mercedes SL in the luxury two-seater category.

    While today's Cadillacs are dramatically improved over what went before (of course, if they weren't the marque would be joining Oldsmobile soon), I'm not seeing anything that makes me think that Cadillac can truly reclaim the title of "Standard of the World," and there doesn't appear to be anything on the horizon that will make me change that perception.

    For that matter, I don't know if ANY marque can aspire to be the "Standard of the World" across the board anymore. But it would be nice if Cadillac could be known for doing something better than anyone else (as BMW is for building "the ultimate driving machine," for example).
  • robbiegrobbieg Posts: 326
    I not sure I agree with you. Cadillac brought out the V-series to have a performance line. In my opinion, this does not have to, nor does it mean, that Cadillac hopes to compete with directly with BMW or Audi. Cadillac can not seriously think that their performace cars are on par with the BMW M series cars. I don't think that people cross shop an M series and a V series. I think Cadillac knows their market and believes that some of their buyers want a "hot rod". This is why Chrysyler has the SRT series. Furthermore, when you sit in a Cadillac you immediately know that you know that you are not in an BMW or Audi.
  • Problem with the V-series is GM thought that stuffing a Corvette motor into anything would be a successful formula.

    Minimal effort the GM way. :blush:
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    Well, that and GM's insanity with their engines.

    They need to offer ONE engine in all of their cars. Make it the best engine they can and drop al of the rental-fodder crud. ie - the Lucerne with the V6 is hopelessly slow. It feels very "80s" - and in a bad way. But the V8 is great.

    Then you go over to a Grand Prix and yet again - GM's not putting its best foot forward - not unless you pay for the XXL Mk4 trim package that puts it into Honda and Toyota pricing range.
  • jkr2106jkr2106 Posts: 231
    They need to offer ONE engine in all of their cars. Make it the best engine they can and drop al of the rental-fodder crud.

    THANK YOU!!! How about a GM VQ35DE?
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    I meant one engine per model, obviously. :P
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    I agree.....The only exception I could see is maybe the CTS, because the "V" is pretty popular. However if GM, made a 400-450 hp. Twin Turbo V-6 via 3.6 from the Velite/GNX they could get rid of the V' series for the CTS. I personally would rather them go this route. :shades:

    Rocky
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    For Cadillac, anyway. Build a thoroughly modern replacement for the Northstar: 4.6L square V8 (90mm bore and stroke) with variable valve timing, direct injection, 13:1 compression, 7500-rpm redline, 360 hp or so. Offer that as the sole engine in the CTS, SRX, STS, DTS, and the Escalade trio (jeez, Cadillac has too many models), then add twin turbos and 11:1 compression for the V-series, 550 hp or so.
  • rockyleerockylee Posts: 14,011
    Sounds like a plan to me. ;)

    Rocky
  • jkr2106jkr2106 Posts: 231
    Ooh, sry. Guess I agree with post #119 then... :)
  • bigo08bigo08 Posts: 102
    ha sounds good to me.
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